Taking over the NSLI-Y Instagram {& School} 11/12-13/18 (NSLI-Y AY Korea)

11/12/18 Monday

I wasn’t looking forward to Monday because I would have to go to school without Katie and that could never be any fun… riding the bus to school and not having anyone to meet up with during breaks proved to be a bit lonely and boring. But she had thrown up a lot over the weekend and could still be contagious… it was best she didn’t come.

day 4


In 영미문학, we started reading an excerpt of this one story by Virginia Woolf which was quite interesting. From now on, we will only be reading in class which is nice because I won’t be needing to SparkNotes any longer {sorry Andrew쌤! In all honesty, I wanted to read the novel alongside the other kids but I didn’t have a copy in time…}

My last period of the day before I left for Korean class was my favorite class ever: 심화 통계학 {please note the sarcasm}. The class wasn’t bad, however. I got to talk to 세림 more which was nice~ Also, I finally mustered up the courage to tell my teacher that I really could not do the coding homework. I told him that I tried but it’s been very stressful for me, and I need to focus on my Korean studies. I explained all this using long sentences and grammar points I learned in class— I was so proud of myself. When I finished speaking, he just looked at me and said “Okay.” It was that easy but I was so terrified this entire time! I even considered writing him a letter!!! Wow! I also returned his laptop to him to seal the deal that I would not be expected to do any more coding homework.

day 1

I didn’t want to eat lunch by myself so I left school early to make my way to 홍대. I planned to just get a convenience store lunch and eat at the youth center with the other students. It was a lot of fun though because I got to watch Kaitlyn teach June a Twice song. I even got it on video! (It will definitely add some spice to our Instagram Takeover! (In case I have not mentioned it before, Katie and I will be taking over the NSLI-Y Instagram on Tuesday (11/13/18). We will be posting pictures on what an average day on our program looks like! I cannot wait! We will be taking some pictures actually on the day, but it is easier to get some things prepared beforehand as it can be difficult taking so many pictures in one day with our busy schedules. So, I took a Korean class photo today and got some footage of transportation.

day 2

Took this while walking to the Better World office! Look at that sky~

Korean class today was very overwhelming but rewarding (two words that I would use to describe studying abroad in a foreign country). Today we answered questions from our workbook about a new grammar point we learned. I think that these are great practices because it makes us think on our feet to try to answer the question posed or fill in a sentence using the new grammar point; however, that does not make me dislike it any less. I feel so anxious when my turn comes as I feel ashamed for having to take a longer time to answer. At one point in the class, I answered the question wrong and the teacher tried explaining to me why it was wrong. I got so frustrated with myself but even after she tried explaining it the second time I could not understand. I asked her to do it one more time and she called for a break so that the others could rest while she explained to me what I was doing wrong. This made me feel worse as I felt so incompetent in comparison to my peers. I felt as if I was such a burden that she could not waste precious class time on me so she called a break time. I also started getting mad at myself for not understanding the grammar point (or at least not looking it up before class because there are no English descriptions of the grammar points in the textbook). Tears started literally brimming around my eye. My teacher explained things again, and I was able to somewhat coherently explain to her why I conjugated the grammar point wrong. It turned out that it was due to my misunderstanding of the situation in the example sentence rather than the grammar point itself. I took a step back and left the class to wait for the rest of break time out in the hallway. I realized that I should not get mad at myself for not understanding things–everyone has their moments. I also should not expect myself to look up grammar points/vocab before class all the time; I have class time to learn those things. I will admit that the class period was very difficult, but I got over it. I got right back to learning Korean.

민정쌤 was going home with Josh this night for his host family home visit, so we walked back to the subway exit together and chatted a bit.

day 3

Host Mom’s homemade 붕어빵 (Carp shaped bread filled with red bean)

The rest of the night was spent studying for my quiz in Korean class the following day. I did my workbook homework as well as some worksheets I figured she would collect later. At 11 pm, I had a rehearsal for the Citizen Ambassador Webinar I would be doing with iEarn on the 14th of November. Because of the time difference, Josh and I had to stay up till midnight for it… as well as for the actual one. The rehearsal went well though! At the time I was not the most coherent… but I can practice that before the actual D-Day. I went to bed really late that night (for me) at around 1:30 am. But, I got comfortable with all my new grammar points so the lack of sleep was justified.

These are the promotional images used for the webinar! I edited them myself!

11/13/18 Tuesday

day 6

Our Morning Routine: Chatting for ten minutes in the sitting area in the hallway before homeroom starts

Tuesday was a pretty average day~ But it was also the day we were taking over the NSLI-Y Instagram, so Katie and I met throughout the day to write captions for each post for the Instagram story. As for class, my Mentorship class was a lot of fun. 건우 gave me my prize for winning the geography game from the last class. During this period, we talked a lot about movies at first: our favorite genres as well as actors. I was trying to tell them that I really loved watching comedy movies with Dwayne Johnson. 건우 knew who he was and it took him quite a while to explain to the others who he was but their reactions were so funny. 긍영 starts gesturing like he has big muscles and a bald head– it made my morning. After these fun topics, things got a bit heavier. We started talking about politics. Honestly, I don’t really remember how it was brought up but I compared peaceful protests in Korea during the whole 박근혜 scandal to the violent protests that are prevalent in America. We talked about school shootings as well as gun policies in different states and finally racism. It was interesting to hear what the guys thought about America and our current issues especially racism. I think that Korea deals with similar problems of prejudice but they are simply more invisible due to the homogeneous population and the history of being a one culture country. But also, Korea just has more curious minds when it comes to race and cultural differences so most interactions are not out of hatred but ignorance. I would love to delve deeper into this distinctive difference because I really do not know much about it. These are just my current observations.

국어 was tough as usual. I tried really hard not to fall asleep. At one point during class, the teacher started asking students questions about their reading homework. If the student did not know the answer (which was mostly everyone), they had to stand up. Let me just say that I stood up every single time he came to me (I could not even understand the questions he was asking!!) I also did not do the homework so there is that, too.

day 7

My last class of the day (before leaving for Korean class) was AP World History which included me just finishing up my homework while listening to the teacher talk about American history. During the break, I left with my friend 지은 to the 매점 (school store) so I could take a picture for the NSLI-Y Instagram story. We joked about buying ice cream but ended up leaving with nothing.

Before lunch, Katie and I gathered all our friends and took a group picture together to be able to post it on Instagram. We needed someone to take it, so 도윤 literally goes up to this random guy she knows and pulls him over to us by the arm and demands he gets a photo of us. Her aggressiveness with him was pretty funny.

day 9

After leaving 하나고, Katie and I quickly made our way over to our favorite 호떡 stand to get delicious 녹차호떡 (Green Tea pancakes) for an Insta picture (but also because we love them!) We asked this random 아줌마 (older woman) to take a photo for us but she said she really could not take photos well. She tried but it was obvious she did not know what she was doing, so this college student came up and helped us out. We were very grateful.


In Korean class, the grammar points were not too hard and I feel like I grasped them pretty quickly. However, we did take a quiz and if I want to use Korean slang… I would say 망했다 (I failed…) I literally failed my quiz. You heard that right… I got 50%! It was the worst I have ever done… I was so upset I almost cried. Especially because our teacher was not quiet about expressing how difficult the test was and so everyone saw my score too in comparison to their Bs… I felt so stupid at that moment! The mistakes I made were so stupid too! I studied the grammar so diligently yesterday and to make mistakes because of not noticing the particles in the sentence… I was very disappointed in myself.

day 11

My Korean Class~ ❤

I tried to ignore the frustration I was experiencing for the rest of the class. Once 4:50 pm rolled around, I felt free~ After class, Katie and I met up and sat outside a convenience store to write a caption for one of our Instagram posts. It was actually a very long process, so we were outside for quite a while sharing a cinnamon peanut butter roll type thing. It was pretty interesting, to say the least.

I came home and had dinner with my host family. Because I arrived later than usual, I only ate with my host dad and brother as everyone else had already eaten. I spent the rest of the night studying, editing some photos, and ATTEMPTing to catch up on overdue blog posts.

day 10


That’s all for this blog post! It’s gotten pretty long… I was originally going to write about three days in this post but obviously, that would have been a bit much. I think that I’ll try to make my next post be another compilation of three days because I don’t think there will be too much to talk about? {Though… I thought the same thing about this one but here we are…} Well, anyway thanks for reading!

  • Emma 엠마


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